Photo Gallery: Chino Police Department building

CHINO - The new $21 million Police Department is finally open.

Officials hosted a grand-opening ceremony on Saturday that included tours and a free barbecue.

The single-story, 102,000-square-foot site at 5450 Walnut Ave., formerly the site of a Home Depot, was remodeled to house all of the Police Department's units.

The police department will start serving the public on Oct. 27.

Natural lighting will be the main source for illuminating the inside of the station.

The building has a state-of-the-art air-conditioning system that exceeds state energy-efficiency standards by 34 percent.

The architect is Ventura-based Leach Mounce Architects and the general contractor is R.I.C. Construction Co. in Hesperia.

The new police station was the city's final use of its Redevelopment Agency funds before they were taken away by the state.

Nineteen of the department's units will be housed in the new building.

The new department is a major upgrade from the 28,400-square-foot station sandwiched between City Hall and the courthouse on Central Avenue.

The new facility - built on 10 acres - will have a fitness center, a break room, a records station, an evidence storage area and a processing center, a dispatch center, a vehicle processing and workshop room, a six-cell detention area, a staff courtyard, and a community room that will be used for meetings, training and the citizens academy.

In case of a major or city-wide disaster the Community Room's large accordion doors can open up so the room could be used as the city's emergency operations center, or EOC.

Another feature that will get high use from officers will be the new eight-lane firing range. Two of the lanes will be 50-yard ranges and the remainder will be 25-yard lanes for pistol shooting.

The firing range room will have ballistic steel plates on the ceilings with 2-inch absorbent rubber paneling that catches the bullets, Pruitt said.

Chino officers will no longer use the Corona Police Department's firing range.

Chief Miles Pruitt said the range area will be separated from the rest of the building for both noise and air-quality reasons.

In addition, the new facility will include a police museum housing police artifacts and memorabilia like old patches, metal signs and old fingerprint cards.

The statue of Officer Russell M. Miller Sr. will be displayed in front of the facility.

The 12-year veteran of the Chino Police Department became its first officer to die in the line of duty on Feb. 1, 2000. A drunken driver struck him as he stopped another motorist for a traffic violation.

Miller's statue, which was in front of the police station on Central Avenue, was removed earlier this year in preparation for the move.

The department has 102 sworn officers and 156 full-time and about 18 part-time employees and 53 volunteers.